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Ready for a refit?

How to determine if your boat is a good candidate for an overhaul, and how to find the pros whose work won’t disappoint you

Gordon Reed had an overhaul done on his 1965 Glastron V-171 Crestflite.Dollars and cents drive many backyard boat projects. Jeff Koenke didn’t have the money for a new boat, so he found a 1984 Boston Whaler Outrage 250 that was damaged in Hurricane Katrina and restored it.
“I paid $3,500, which isn’t a whole lot, and I have the title,” says Koenke, 46, who is from Sarasota, Fla.
The restoration took about two-and-a-half years, and he has around $30,000 invested in the project.



‘Sustainable passion’ is a key ingredient

The owner of this 1963 Ensign hired Metan Marine of Halifax, Mass., to restore the sailboat after the company restored his 23-foot 1976 SeaCraft center console.We’ve all seen them — the pollen-covered, leaf-filled, forlorn-looking boats sitting year after year on corroding trailers in boatyards and backyards.



A tale of two very different refits

Boat restorations vary from project to project. Some boats might be structurally sound, but need updated wiring and electronics, plumbing or a paint job. Others might be weak in the knees and require a complete rebuild, starting with nothing but the bare hull. A 1994 Marlin 350 and a 1970 Formula 233 represent two different types of refits.
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DIYers: You’re going to need some epoxy

Soundings asked three of the owners who completed restorations to identify a few tools and materials they used.



The electrical system: your boat’s lifeline

The electrical system is relied on to power more technology than ever, even on small boats.As today’s boats become more sophisticated, with more of our power-consuming shore-side comforts brought aboard, so do their power requirements. I’m not certain I want my boats to follow the path automobiles have taken, although I enjoy creature comforts.



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